SpaceX isn’t building a Hyperloop, the sci-fi transportation system that would use low-pressure, miles long tube track to essentially shoot transit pods between destinations at super-fast speeds. But it is encouraging others to build it, and today announced a design competition wherein others can submit their own ideas for the passenger-carrying pods themselves.
The Pod competition is open to anyone, and is geared towards university students and independent engineering teams. The competition is open until September 15, 2015, at which point submissions will be vetted by the company, and SpaceX hopes to build the one-mile test track near its Hawthorne, CA HQ by June of next year, at which time SpaceX hopes to host a head-to-head competition of pods from submissions built to human scale.
SpaceX still makes sure to distance itself from any control or ownership over eventual Hyperloop commercial production plans, but with this completion, they’re definitely encouraging it to actually become a reality.
Elon Musk, SpaceX CEO and founder, has also announced that the company will create its own reference Hyperloop Pod, but that it will remain shrouded until after the various entrants race their own versions on the test track.